Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The 'axis of evil' speechwriter David Frum

Now he says we should have confronted Saudi Arabia and Pakistan first, even though he says he believed Iraq had WMDs. He believes the Bush administration has made some serious mistakes. (Really? Ya think?)

SPIEGEL ONLINE: The feeling in Europe seems to be much more, that by attacking Iraq, America lost the credibility to deal with the much more serious problems like North Korea and Iran.

Frum: That is a criticism that looks very powerful, five years later. One of the things the Bush Administration believed in 2002 was precisely that because Iraq was the weakest link it would be the easiest to deal with. The administration's plans were all premised on the idea that Iraq could be a success story, fairly quickly.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Does the president have to give up his goals for Iraq?

Frum: The goals have been shrinking inevitably. If there is a suppression of the violence and some kind of accountable government with some kind of Western orientation, people will see this as a very, very big success. And maybe that should have been the goal all along. What the president believed was that the people of the region were eager to shed the extremism, to create a positive model to oppose the negative model offered by al-Qaida. That turned out to be much too rosy an assumption.

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